Gatwick to reveal its noise reduction measures
If Gatwick’s northern runway is put into regular use, the airport plans to set a noise restriction (known as an “envelope”), which will be tightened as the number of flights increases.
The change is intended to encourage airlines to employ quieter planes at the airport.
The ‘noise envelope’ would provide homeowners with the assurance that when the project reaches full capacity (approximately 2038), it will produce less noise than in 2019 – Gatwick’s busiest year to date.
The airport may propose the noise cap because new “next generation” aircraft, which are quieter, will gradually replace older, louder flights in the future years, outweighing any noise increase caused by reopening the runway.
If the plan is accepted, Gatwick will report on the noise envelope’s performance and anticipated performance in the years ahead, in order to prevent exceeding the agreed-upon noise envelope.
The airport is also proposing a more generous Noise Insulation Scheme for residents living near the airport, which would increase the number of eligible households by up to 1,750 compared to the current scheme, as well as a tiered package based on the noise levels experienced at certain areas.
A new Inner Zone will provide the highest level of noise insulation and will apply to between 250 and 450 households.
These households will be eligible for replacement sound glazing or internal secondary glazing on all windows, sound ventilators and blinds in noise-sensitive rooms, replacement doors in these rooms as needed, and sound upgrading of bedroom ceilings as needed and possible.
Outside of the Inner Zone, a new Outer Zone will apply to around 3,300 houses and will have sound ventilators for noise-sensitive areas, allowing windows to stay closed while providing ventilation.
If necessary, the airport would collaborate with schools to provide a sufficient noise insulation solution.
Gatwick has launched a public consultation on proposals to utilize its existing Northern Runway alongside its main runway.
According to Andrew Sinclair, head of noise and airspace, Gatwick Airport, “We fully recognize that we need to carefully balance any benefits that the routine use of the northern runway will deliver, including over 18,000 new jobs, with the impact our plans may have on people living close to the airport.”
He added, “That is why, as part of our northern runway consultation we’re proposing to put a binding cap on noise generated at the airport and we would build on this by rolling out a significantly improved noise insulation package for residents living close to the airport.”
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